I’ve dusted off this blog post from deep in the archives… all sorts of things are buried down there!
In the early days of this blog I wrote about ten albums that had shaped my youth. I think its about time for an updated version of that.
Here are five more albums that have informed my musical tastes.
Róisín Murphy – Overpowered
Squelchy synths, 80’s vibes, seductive vocals, incredible hooks and cool, sophisticated lyrics make up Róisín Murphy’s second solo album, Overpowered. I’ve been a massive Murphy fan ever since, hungrily devouring every song, album and collaboration that she’s released.
Top track: Overpowered
Ryan Adams – Heartbreaker
I discovered this album in the aftermath of my best mate’s death. It seemed to speak to my grief; the melancholy of Heartbreaker is the soundtrack to my devastation and loss. I became a huge Adams fan, and have almost every album of his, but none can match the raw emotional punch I felt with this one.
Top track: In My Time Of Need
Robyn – Robyn
Yes, her subsequent work has arguably only got better with each release, but this was the album that got me hooked on Robyn’s music. Emotive, smart, witty and full of the best kinds of ear worms, with beats, hooks and electronic sounds that all point in the direction of her epic next album, Body Talk. This was the starting gun.
Top track: Handle Me
Bright Light Bright Light – Make Me Believe In Hope
Like Robyn’s long-lost Welsh cousin, Bright Light Bright Light (aka Rod Thomas) embraces and celebrates the electronic dance sound of the early 90’s, with songs of heartache and love on the dancefloor. Irresistible pop that deserves a much larger audience. I defy you not to fall for this.
Key track: Waiting For The Feeling
Madonna – Erotica
I was only 18 when this was released, so this really was at the very beginning of my adulthood, but this album has stuck with me.
There’s the jazzy, seductive Saint Etienne-esque Secret Garden, with it tinkling piano and spoken vocals, and the Chicago house cover of Fever, softly sung over minimalist house beats. There’s the wonderful Waiting, which acts like a sequel to Justify My Love, with more Saint Etienne vibes and hip-hop undertones, and of course the pop classic Deeper and Deeper. Sure, there are a few songs here that I don’t like, but the great ones vastly outweigh them.
Top Track: Secret Garden